Possession of Unregistered Firearm in California

The state of California takes firearm offenses very seriously. If you violate laws about unregistered guns, you may end up requiring a bail bond, having to undergo a criminal trial, facing jail time, or needing to pay a fine. The laws in California tend to be a little complicated and strangely worded, so many people in California are not actually aware of what the law has to say about unregistered firearms. There are many important things to understand about firearm registration laws in California.

What Are the Californian Laws About Possessing Unregistered Firearms?

Technically, California does not actually have any law criminalizing the owning of a firearm that is unregistered. However, there are certain circumstances where a person may end up in trouble if they do not have the proper firearm permits. California’s gun laws state that it is typically illegal to take a weapon outside of your home without the proper permits and registration.

California P.C. 25850 c 6California PC 25850 c 7, and California PC 12031 state that if a person is not listed as the registered owner of a handgun and does not have a concealed carry license, they may face fines for carrying a loaded firearm on their person or in their vehicle in any incorporated city, public place, or street. If the weapon is an assault weapon, such as the AK and AR-15 series, California PC 30525 states that it must have been owned by 2004 and registered by 2006 to be legal. If you are carrying the firearm as a concealed firearm in California without being properly registered for a concealed carry permit, California PC 25400 states that your punishment will be worse.

What Is the Punishment & Penalty for Carrying Firearm That Is Not Registered?

Just possessing a loaded or unloaded gun that is not registered is not illegal, but you may face punishment if you take it into a public space. California P.C. 25850 c 6 and California PC 25850 c 7 states that those who carry a loaded firearm that is not registered may face up to one year in county jail and a fine of up to $1,000. This is a felony charge, so it may also make it more difficult to get employment or get a lenient sentence for future crimes.

The punishment for carrying a firearm will be even worse for carrying an unregistered gun and concealing it without a concealed carry license. In that case, the felony sentence for firearm offenses may include up to three years in jail time. Those who commit another crime besides simply carrying an unregistered gun may face further punishments. A person may end up with additional jail time or fines if they committed other firearm offenses and it was then discovered that the gun they used was not registered in their name.

Are There Any Defenses for Unregistered Firearm Chargers?

Because of the way that California’s gun laws are worded, there are potential defenses for these sorts of firearm charges. A gun owner is allowed to legally loan a gun for 30 days to another person with a certificate of eligibility. Therefore, proving that proving the gun was just a loaned weapon used by someone with a certificate of eligibility may help to fight firearm charges. If a person can prove that they were not aware of the presence of the unregistered gun in a vehicle, they may be able to avoid punishment, Other defenses for having a gun without the proper firearm permits may rely on proving that the person did not take the gun off of the private property.

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